War In Freeport

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Postby Patrick O'Duffy » Mon Feb 25, 2002 2:05 pm

Hi ho.

Having finished Madness, I'm moving my Freeport campaign into a war storyline this week, which should last for 4-5 sessions. After that, we'll move into Hell in Freeport.

I'd like to quickly outline what I'm doing to see in anyone can spot any game-breaking flaws. I'd also like to know if any of this is incompatible with the events of HiF, since I'm still waiting for my copy to arrive.

So it's a month after the death of Drac, and Freeport is getting chaotic. The Captain's Council is busy infighting, and city funds aren't being released - so no money for the militia, public works or the like. Prices are going up, and there have been a couple of riots. There are reports of plague.

Most people expect one of the councillors to assume the role of Sea Lord, breaking the law that says only a descendant of Drac can take the position. The city needs a Sea Lord to govern it - but as soon as someone acts to take the throne, there'll be civil war.

Then a candidate appears - a pirate queen with evidence that she's a descendant of Drac. (No idea what kind of evidence to use here - any suggestions?) She's going to take the position and push Freeport into a new era of greatness. Unfortunately, she's also a major enemy of the PCs - she burned down the homes of two of them, and looks to be behind the plague.

To overthrow her, the PCs will have to a) prove she's not a true descendant of Drac, b) find someone who _can_ take the Sea Lord role, and c) fight off a pirate fleet in a big, action-packed sea battle. This should be doable if they find a sage who's learned the secret of making cannon - but he's being hunted by warring factions from the mainland.

At the end of the War storyline, things should be getting back towards the status quo, there'll be a new Sea Lord (possibly a PC), and Freeport will have weapons that no-one else in the world has. Then we start up with Hell.

Any thoughts.

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Postby Warchild » Mon Feb 25, 2002 7:32 pm

I like it. Though it think it would cooler if she actually WAS a descendant of Drac. That would make her a more dangerous enemy and create a tougher role playing twist, because she really does have a claim on the Sea Lord title!
I would replace the first possible result with; A) Prove she is behind the plague.
Of course, if they don't pull if off, she could then actually get the title and they could have a whole campaign of trying to unseat the Pirate Queen....hmmmm.....
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Postby anoxos » Thu Feb 28, 2002 8:01 pm

In terms of proving or disproving the claim, how mystical do you want to get? On the heavily mystical side, you could have all the candidates go through a magical trial of some sort, maybe even having the ghost of old Anton Drac determine who his blood-kin are. On the less magical side, you can always have them submit geneologies for scrutiny by scrying by a mage....

And I do like the idea of her being a true descendant, making getting rid of her all the harder.

There's no reason for this to interfere with HiF, as long as there is a city left, as most of HiF doesn't even take place in Freeport at all!
My players keep saying I have a taste for blood...I'll answer them as soon as I'm done with my steak tartare...
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Postby Patrick O'Duffy » Sat Mar 02, 2002 7:29 pm

On 2002-02-28 20:01, anoxos wrote:
In terms of proving or disproving the claim, how mystical do you want to get?


I've gone for a mix-and-match approach. Any claimant to the post needs two things:

1 - Documentation of their descent from the original Drac. The Captain's Council have extensive records on Drac's life and travels before & after he founded Freeport, so they can check the documents against the records.

2 - There's a magical device that contains a drop of Captain Drac's blood. The claimant must lay their hand on the device; if they're truly a descendant, there's an appropriate display of confirmation.

Now, I've decided to go with my villain being a false claimant. This way, we won't have to go through the same process of finding a real Sea Lord again when the PCs strike her down.

She's got the bases covered in both directions:

1 - She has a confederate on the Captain's Council, who forges appropriate documentation for her.

2 - Her wizard cohort breaks into the tomb of Captain Drac and steals a finger from his corpse. He then uses the Misdirection spell to attune the pirate queen to the finger, making her register as 'Drac-blooded' to the sensing device.

It's still a shaky claim, because the PCs will be making lots of noise about spells and forgeries. But the Council will go with it - because a false Sea Lord is probably better than no Sea Lord at all. The PCs will get a nasty shock when former allies turn against them in favour of the pretender - and former enemies ally with them for a short period in order to oust her.

Now I just need to think of a way to put some dinosausr in there. I was flicking through the Monster Manual, and they just kinda leapt out at me...

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Postby timemrick » Mon Mar 04, 2002 6:17 am

On 2002-03-02 19:29, Patrick O'Duffy wrote:
Now I just need to think of a way to put some dinosausr in there. I was flicking through the Monster Manual, and they just kinda leapt out at me...


OK, 30-second answer: In the CoC chronology, the Serpent People have been around since just before the dinosaurs arose. So perhaps a human wizard (or a Yellow Sign cultist?) has rediscovered ancient Valossan lore about the location of a "lost world" region, or perhaps how to resurrect/recreate extinct creatures. Enter one or more dinos, as either brute muscle on one side of the war, or as rampaging beasts set loose on the city as petty revenge.

That, or you introduce some really darn old and powerful Serpent Person (yes, some have been alive since the Age of Dinosaurs!) who is a were-dino...

Or use both ideas, if you really want to get over-the-top. They're likely to distract everyone from your war plot, though. :wink:

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Postby Patrick O'Duffy » Mon Mar 04, 2002 2:01 pm

On 2002-03-04 06:17, timemrick wrote:
Or use both ideas, if you really want to get over-the-top. They're likely to distract everyone from your war plot, though. :wink:


I've decided to keep it simple. In the middle of this arc, the PCs are going to have to leave Freeport to escape Alabaster's wrath and find evidence that she's a false descendant.

There'll be a storm, a shipwreck - and a landing on fog-covered Skull Island. Home to primitive lizardmen, dire tigers, dwarven slavetraders - and, of course, big goddamn dinosaurs.

I'm trying for a 'pulp adventure' with my campaign, and nothing says pulp like an island full of dinosaurs.
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